how do I become a certified pilates instructor

Hey there, future Pilates pros! Wondering if becoming a certified Pilates Instructor is your next big move? I totally get it. The big question, “Should I become a certified Pilates Instructor” and “How Do I become a certified Pilates Instructor” echoed in my mind constantly. I’ll share my unexpected Pilates journey that transformed not just my body but my entire life.

I dove head first into the world of Pilates  with a curious heart and an open mind. Little did I know, as I first stepped onto the Pilates reformer that I was beginning a thrilling adventure that would lead me to become a certified Pilates instructor to travel around the world and teach. So, buckle up and let me take you through the ins and outs of becoming a Pilates instructor. Who knows, it might just be the plot twist your life story needs!

How A Knee Injury Led Me To Become A Certified Pilates Teacher.

how do I become a certified pilates instructor

It was a painful knee injury that unexpectedly opened the doors for me to become a Pilates teacher. December 2010, I had enrolled in a 30-Day kick boxing challenge and on day 7 my right knee gave out, I kicked the bag with my right foot and immediately felt shooting pain in my right knee (the same knee I had dislocated and stretched out my ligaments  10 years earlier).

The next day I woke up with a swollen knee, I was in constant discomfort and I was very limited in my movements. I tried yoga, stretching and various exercises but nothing seemed to work. My roommate recommended I should try out the new Pilates studio in town,  she said its low impact and resistance training, I think it will help you rehab your knee.  

I was skeptical –yet desperate to get rid of my knee pain. I signed up for my first Pilates workout class and within 55 minutes my entire life changed instantly.

I was amazed at how these simple Pilates exercises were low impact  yet highly effective in strengthening my core, hip and glute muscles, exactly what my injured knee needed. At the end of class,  I pulled my credit card out and purchased a 10 pack of Pilates workout classes.  I was broke at the time, but I figured limping around town and being broke was a bad combo.  I preferred to be  broke without the  limp.  LOL

As I immersed myself in Pilates reformer workouts, I began to experience a significant transformation. The focused Pilates movements and core strengthening techniques not only alleviated the pain in my knee but also improved my overall body awareness and posture.

The gentle, rehabilitative nature of Pilates reformer workouts  allowed me to work around my injury, slowly building strength without causing further harm. This journey wasn’t just about physical healing; it was a mental and emotional rejuvenation. I was going through a very hard time in my life, and I was struggling with depression and anxiety. The sense of accomplishment I felt with each Pilates session, seeing my body respond positively, was incredibly empowering.

A Serendipitous Opportunity: Saying “Yes” to Becoming a Certified Pilates Teacher

My Pilates journey took an unexpected turn when I attended an instructor’s  Pilates class in Boca Raton . The Boca studio was a world renowned training center for Pilates Instructors, it had every single piece of Balanced Body Pilates Equipment and all the instructors were top notch. Little did I know that this particular class would become a pivotal moment in my life.

how do I become a certified pilates instructor

In that split second, a myriad of thoughts raced through my head. 

  • Could I really step into the role of a Pilates instructor?
  • Did I have what it took to guide and inspire others? 
  • Can I afford a Pilates certification?
  • Do I want to become a certified Pilates instructor?

Despite the whirlwind of doubts, something deep inside me said, “Yes.” It was a spontaneous decision, one that would usually require careful consideration, but it felt right.

That unexpected “yes” was not just an agreement to undertake the Pilates certification; it was an affirmation of my passion and commitment to a practice that had given me so much. This was the beginning of a new chapter, where I would not only continue my own journey with Pilates but also help others discover its transformative power.

I pulled my credit card out again and signed up for the 600 hour Power Pilates Teacher Training Certification.

My Journey To Become A Certified Pilates Teacher

The year that followed my spontaneous “yes” in Boca Raton was a rollercoaster of emotions, challenges, and relentless determination. Pursuing the path to become a fully certified Pilates teacher was far from easy. It tested my limits, physically, mentally, and financially.

how do I become a certified pilates instructor

There were moments, three distinct ones, in fact, when I almost gave up. Each time, I found myself thinking about the long road ahead of me: the rigorous training schedule, commuting to and from south beach to Boca Raton, the depth of anatomical knowledge required, and working two jobs to make ends meet.

Financially, this period was one of the toughest in my life. I was  broke and quitting seemed like the only option to cut my losses and find a more stable career path. But with each thought of giving up, I was reminded of why I started. Pilates was not just a workout for me; it had become a lifeline, a source of strength during my knee rehabilitation, and a newfound passion that ignited a fire within me.

As I pushed through the year, my Pilates teacher training journey was marked by personal growth, resilience, and an unwavering commitment to my goal. Finally, after countless hours of practice, study, and self-reflection, I emerged as a fully certified Pilates teacher. I didn’t just earn a Pilates certification; I gained a deeper sense of self, a resilient spirit, and the ability to inspire others through the power of Pilates.

The Balancing Act: From LIV Nightclub to Teaching Pilates Classes

how do I become a certified pilates instructor

This double life was exhilarating yet exhausting. The contrast between LIV nightclub and the serene, focused environment of the Pilates studio were polar opposites. This hectic schedule was unsustainable, and I quickly realized that if I truly wanted to chase my dreams of teaching Pilates around the world, something had to give. Miami Beach, with its endless parties and sleepless nights, was thrilling, but it wasn’t conducive to the goals I had set for myself. I needed a change, a chance to focus solely on my new found passion for teaching Pilates.

Teaching Pilates & Barre Classes in Dubai

One night I was scrolling through craigslist looking for teaching opportunities and an unexpected  craigslist ad caught my eye. It was an opportunity that seemed almost too good to be true – a position for a Barre / Pilates instructor in the glamorous city of Dubai. With a mix of excitement and nervousness, I decided to apply, not fully knowing where this chance might lead.

how do I become a certified pilates instructor

The application process was a whirlwind. After submitting my details online, I was soon contacted for a Skype interview. The screen lit up, and there was Andrea, the studio owner in Dubai, with a warm smile and a demeanor that instantly put me at ease. We talked at length about the role, the studio’s vision, and how my experience and passion for Pilates, Barre and Nutrition made me a suitable candidate. The interview felt less like a formal interrogation and more like a meeting of minds with a shared passion for fitness and wellness.

When Andrea offered me the job, I was over the moon yet simultaneously gripped by a wave of realization. Accepting this position meant a significant life change. It meant leaving behind the familiar streets of Miami Beach, the life I had known, and stepping into a new world, both culturally and professionally.

With a heart full of dreams and a spirit ready for adventure, I made the bold decision to accept the offer. The following weeks were a blur of activity. I quit my job, negotiated my way out of my apartment lease, sold most of my belongings, and packed my life into 2 suitcases. I booked a one-way ticket out of Miami Beach. It was a leap of faith, a step towards a future where I could fully dedicate myself to my passion for teaching Pilates and travel.

Teaching Pilates Around The World

My adventures as a certified Pilates instructor have taken me across continents and cultures, each step a testament to the power of dreams and perseverance.   

how do I become a certified pilates instructor

I lived in Abu Dhabi and Dubai for 1 year, I met 4 amazing fitness instructors united by a shared passion for teaching and adventure. The experience was not just about teaching; it was a cultural exchange, where I learned as much from my students as they did from me. The warmth and hospitality of the clients there enriched my spirit in ways I had never imagined.

My passion to learn everything about Pilates led me to the sunny southern California: Orange County and Los Angeles. The laid-back yet health-conscious vibe of these Californian gems was a perfect fit for my teaching style. Here is where I discovered contemporary Pilates and my Pilates teaching went up a notch. 

And now, I find myself in the lush paradise of Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, teaching Pilates virtually. Technology has allowed me to connect with students around the world from this tranquil haven, blending the physical with the digital in a harmonious balance. The peaceful environment here has been a source of inspiration, not just for me, but also for my students who join me from all corners of the globe.

Should You Become a Certified Pilates Instructor?

Becoming a certified Pilates Instructor changed my life! Looking back, each destination has left a lasting  mark on my heart and my practice. My journey has been more than just teaching Pilates; it has been about connecting with people, embracing diverse cultures, and sharing the transformative power of this practice. From the bright lights of major cities to the jungles of Costa Rica, my journey of teaching Pilates around the world has been nothing short of a dream come true.

As I continue this incredible adventure, I am reminded every day of the power of following one’s passion. It’s a journey that has taught me resilience, adaptability, and the joy of spreading wellness across borders. My story is a testament to the fact that with determination, courage, and a bit of serendipity, dreams do come true.  

Tips On How To Become A Pilates Instructor

Hindsight is always 20/20 and I WISH I would have known a couple key things before I embarked on my journey to teaching Pilates:

Pilates as a Hobby Vs Teaching Pilates Full time 

Do you want a hobby or do you want a career? There’s a huge difference between taking Pilates classes as a client and teaching Pilates full time to pay your bills. A lot of clients have asked me over the years “Jess, should I become a Pilates teacher?” I love taking Pilates classes. My response is …

Embarking on the journey from a Pilates client to a certified instructor opens a whole new world. The transition is significant, as it’s not just about mastering the art of Pilates but also about building a sustainable career. It involves the challenge of turning your passion into a profitable profession, one where you can truly make a living and pay your bills through your love for Pilates.

Are you committed to eat live breathe Pilates 24/7 for the first 2 years to become a great teacher?  You will  have to make A LOT of sacrifices along the way to become a great Pilates teacher.

In order to teach Pilates, You Have To Have It In Your Body. 

My teacher trainer Kelly and Stephanie would always tell us girls, you have to have it in your body in order to teach Pilates to others. Get ready to clock in those hours on the Pilates mat doing solo Pilates workouts. After I paid $6,000 for my Pilates teacher certification, I didn’t have much money for extras such as taking a Pilates reformer class everyday, instead I did mat Pilates in my living room everyday. Do you see yourself doing a solo Pilates workout  every single day?

How Many Sacrifices Are You Willing To Make To Become An In-Demand Pilates Teacher?

  • Are you ok with going to bed early and waking up early to take a Pilates class or do a solo Pilates practice BEFORE you start your day? 
  • Are you comfortable speaking in front of groups? As a Pilates teacher you talk a lot in front of clients. 
  • Once you’re partially certified, are you prepared to sit and observe Pilates classes for free to learn from senior teachers? 
  • Can you spend hours at a time in the  Pilates  studio and be ok? 
  • How long can you afford to NOT make money from teaching Pilates? Until you are partially certified Pilates teacher you wont make money from teaching.
  • How will you juggle a job and Pilates teacher training? Do you have a savings account? 
  • Do you want to teach group classes or private classes? 
  • Do you want to teach Mat Pilates classes? 
  • Do you want to teach on  the Pilates apparatus equipment? Pilates Equipment will require more training to learn how to teach on all the Pilates apparatus equipment. 
  • WHY do you want to become a Pilates teacher? When things get tough you need to remember your why to help you keep going and not quit. 

How To Pick  The Right Pilates Teacher Trainer Certification 

This one is a hard one and I recommend taking your time with this decision. I would approach this decision like an interview, you are the one in the power position hiring the right candidate.  Google, call around, reach out to local teachers who were certified through them.

I personally would find Pilates teachers who went through the same Pilates certification and sign up for their class and ask them what their experience was … trust me they will spill the beans .. LOL 

Sign up for classes from the studios you want to get certified from. You want to “feel the vibe” you will be spending a lot of time with these Pilates teachers and be investing money to get certified.  Then you have to decide if you want to be a classical Pilates teacher or contemporary Pilates teacher.

A very simple question to ask yourself : What style of Pilates do you enjoy doing? Because you will be doing it a lot – so you should enjoy it! Becoming a Pilates teacher wont be easy but it will be rewarding if you truly enjoy helping people grow physically and mentally. Plus you will improve your own health and fitness by becoming a Pilates teacher.

I transformed my entire life by becoming a Pilates teacher. I improved my mental health, lost weight and put on 10 pounds of muscle. I can teach you how to do it in my 1 to 1 coaching programs. My program teaches you EXACTLY how to meal plan, pick the right exercises for your body and create systems to support a healthy lifestyle even if your a busy working mom with limited time.

My Thrilling Journey To Become a Certified Pilates Instructor
My Thrilling Journey To Become a Certified Pilates Instructor
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